01.05.10

Comment On On President Obama’s Announcement Of Increased Airline Security Measures

“Americans understand the need for increased vigilance and heightened security following the Christmas Day plot in Detroit.  The administration is undertaking efforts to investigate where inter-agency communication and airline screening may have broken down to allow for such a serious breach in security.

“President Obama was right to call this a ‘systemic failure’ of our security procedures.  This incident reveals the serious issues with airline security methods and information sharing that still exist years after 9/11.  The administration is now extending terror watchlists and imposing new, even more restrictive rules on air travel.  We all agree that changes need to be made, but we must be thoughtful and purposeful about it.  We should resist reflexive answers or political opportunism that would be a disservice to the traveling public and to America’s security.  Imposing a one--fits-all security response is not necessarily the most effective way to protect Americans.  Congress and the administration need to work together to ensure that such rules are actually effective, and not simply more invasive.  We do not want to compound the problems we have seen with terrorist watchlists in the past.

“The Judiciary Committee’s January 20 hearing will be an opportunity to explore how we can move forward effective answers and tools to address future terrorist threats.”

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